Have Ewe Any Wool?

Wednesday, March 28, 2007


I am suffering from a severe lack of time to knit and spin, but definitely am not suffering from the lack of "Inspirations"!

At our guild meeting tonight (Purls of Distinction Knitting Guild), several members had fabulous "works of art" to share with everyone. My only regret is that I didn't take photos of all the fabulous creations (like Pamela's felted French Market Basket and Virginia's fabulous vest!)

Yvonne had the most gorgeous mitered sweater I'd ever seen.....it's absolutely breath taking! I think the picture speaks for itself!

Check out Jo Anne's "Knitted Babe" (from a pattern in the "Knitted Babe's" book). Don't you love the necklace the "babe" is wearing? Nora's fabulous jacket (one half of which is shown on the table) is the "Lastrada" by Hanne Falkenberg. It comes as a kit - it's quite stunning. The thought of having 450 stitches in a single row is a bit scarey!!!! The Hanne Falkenberg site shows a completed "Lastrada" Jacket.

And the baby items: Jo Anne's adorable baby sweater....it's the sweetest little sweater....complete with little duck buttons! Nora's baby blanket finished up beautifully - I love the patterning....a sort of basket weave that gives it both depth and interest. The second photo is a gorgeous cabled sweater out of Aran Silk if I'm remembering correctly. I just love the "braided cable" on the front of it! (Be sure to click on the photos for a "close-up" of the stitches so you can see the details!)


Joan is working on a very interesting crochet project....you can try it too! It's the Lorenz Manifold Crochet Pattern. It looks absolutely fascinating....and is a bit challenging to crochet since the instructions are from the UK and must be translated to US crochet terms! (Be sure to scroll down when you bring up the link....there are several pictures embedded in the 29 page document.)

Monday, March 26, 2007

Double the Pleasure!

Today was definitely a "Double the Pleasure" day!

First, the catalog for Maryland Sheep and Wool arrived.....now I can go through and start planning my "stops" at this year's festival. It's fun to see "who's new" this year as well as to view the cool design for this year's T-Shirt.

It's sooo exciting....the festival is just over a month away! It's hard to believe that a year has sped by!

Second, a wonderful package arrived from my "Spin-to-Knit" Angel - Meera! There's some gorgeous hand spun and some wonderful Merino/Silk to spin myself! And.....that's not all....she's even included lavender scented Sweater Soap - a must for protecting and cleaning fine woolens! Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Lots of Spinning!

I'd definitely classify this as a "spinning week" - very little knitting was done. Wednesday could be classified as a "spinning marathon"! I think the only knitting I've done has been to make a little bit of progress (about 10 more rows) on the beaded scarf.

I plied a large skein of the white BFL I'd purchased at Misty Mountain Farm. I'd finished spinning all the BFL from my prior purchase last week, but hadn't had a chance to ply it. Thank goodness I was there a couple of weeks ago and picked up some more - I'd hate to run out of this lustrous wool!

I went to my spinning group in the evening and started spinning the red Merino. I didn't quite get the skein finish, so I continued spinning at home. I was on a mission to complete this skein as it's for someone else. I tried to spin it fairly thin, and I think I succeeded. Now, all I have to do is ply it and set the twist!

In the morning, I went to the Waterford Spinners and Weaver's spinning group. Before leaving, however, I had to quickly ply the brown BFL I'd finished spinning last week in order to free up a couple of bobbins! I had a fabulous time - there was quite a crowd! We spun in the morning, broke for lunch, and then spun for a while in the afternoon. I saw a couple of my fellow spinners that I hadn't seen for a while! It was so inspiring to see everyone's gorgeous hand spun!

Shirley hosted the get together. She has a fabulous weaving studio and is an avid spinner as well. Right now, I have severe studio envy - it's so organized and artistically laid out!

Colleen brought her first hand spun - it was GORGEOUS. The yarn had a very even gauge....and definitely did NOT look like someone's first hand spun! It was Icelandic wool spun on an Ashford Traveler. Bravo Colleen! Celeste was spinning some gorgeous multi-colored wool - I can't remember the studio she purchased it from.....hmmmmm. Liz has some absolutely gorgeous New Zealand wool that she was spinning - it was so soft - it was a very nice natural brown that looked very rich spun up....and spun like a dream!

Susan had a spinning wheel catastrophe earlier - when she brought her wheel in from the cold, she heard a loud "crack"....you guessed it - the wood split! Poor Susan! She decided she'd use her hand spindle instead. That worked well for a while....until it cracked when she dropped it! Poor dear! St. Distaff has certainly NOT been watching out for Susan!

There were several other people there....I just can't remember all of their names or what they were spinning! I should have taken some pictures! Duh!

I started spinning some "mystery wool" while I was at Shirley's. My friend, Kathleen, had given it to me last fall. She wasn't sure what all was in it and didn't remember where she'd purchased it. It's wool top and has a dark base with streaks of very bright top throughout in multiple colors. The colors include: bright pink, turquoise, green, white, silver, red, you name it! The resulting singles are gorgeous with multiple hues. The plied yarn will have a lot of depth and I love the luster of the spun wool. I'm trying to spin very thin. Perhaps some socks? I'm assuming that the "mystery" fibers will be nylon or polyester.....I still have to do the "burn test" to try to determine the fiber content.

Wednesday evening, I plied the red Merino and another skein of the white BFL. I really like how the red turned out - I think the recipient will be very pleased. She's also getting one of the white BFL skeins as well. To finish off the evening, I went back to spinning the "mystery wool" until I was ready to "call it a night".

I continued spinning the "mystery wool". It's taking FOREVER to fill a bobbin because I'm spinning so thin! I'm about 2/3 of the way done with the bobbin now. I took this picture Wednesday evening, and I've done quite a bit since then!

More spinning on the "mystery wool"....I really like how it's turning out. I also set the twist on all 4 skeins that I'd plied this week - 2 white BFL, one brown BFL, and the red Merino. The Merino bled A LOT! I guess this is typical of both reds and blues....argh! It's annoying! I was so afraid I would "felt" it with the number of times I had to soak it! I may re-soak, but this time, use some Synthrapol to remove the excess dye as I'm afraid there's STILL a bit left!

I volunteered at the VSA Spinning/Weaving day along with several other members of the Blue Ridge Spinners and Weavers Guild. We only had a few students, but this is the first time we tried this....and it allowed us to work out all the "kinks" before the next time. There were 3 stations:

Spinning - using handmade spindles (made from a dowel, a cup hook, several CDs and a couple of rubber bands) as well as spinning on a spinning wheel

Weaving - free-form using a variety of "found items", roving, pipe-cleaners, and feathers as well as on a table loom.

Felting - Nuno Felting (also known as laminated felting)

It was a lot of fun and I even got to learn a new skill! Ever since I saw Lauri's Nuno Felted scarf, I wanted to learn how to do it. Today, I got the chance! All the students as well as the volunteers made bookmarks with roving, silk fabric, embroidery floss tassels....and LOTS of "elbow grease"! I was amazed at how different every bookmark came out!

I found a good website that steps you through the process of making a Nuno Felted Scarf, so in case you interested, check out the Felt Scarf instructions. I also found a You-Tube demo of the process where they show how to make a Nuno Felted Purse....it's fascinating!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Baby Booties and Dodger

Here's the completed Lace Top Baby Booties I just finished for our friend's first baby. This is my favorite pattern for booties and it's free - Lace Top Baby Booties . It's knit on straights and uses the 3 needle bind off for the bottom, so the only stitching I had to do was the back of each bootie. I like to make the ties in a contrasting color - I find that very appealing.

Now, for the "cute animal" picture. Dodger, my friend Amy's dog, is such a ham. At first glance, I thought he was simply standing on the bench sunning himself, but NO. Look closely at the picture.....he's actually SITTING on the railing of the deck (rear on the railing, rear legs folded in a "seated" position") and he's balancing himself with his front paws! I thought I was going to die laughing when I saw this. According to Amy, he does this all the time. It makes you wonder how he even thought to try it! (Click on the picture to get a larger view so you can see his "pose" better!)

Oh...I almost forgot! I FINALLY made it to Aylin's Woolgatherer. The shop is very nice but it's a bit hidden - 3rd floor of Loehman's Plaza (behind the 7-Eleven are doors to enter the building, then you take the stairs or elevator to the 3rd floor). The store is brimming with yarns, patterns, knitting bags, and notions. I TOTALLY wore myself out looking through the entire room of sale patterns and yarns. I got some fabulous deals - all the patterns I bought were 50-75% off. Aylin is a very warm person and you really feel welcome in her shop - I'm so glad I finally made it there!

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Lots of Knitting!

Last Week:
I managed to get in quite a bit of knitting this week, though not much spinning. The upcoming week should be the big spinning week for me as I have several "projects" that I need to get done!

I only managed to spin for a few hours Tuesday evening, but it was in fabulous company. A nice intimate group including some folks I hadn't seen for a while. I finished the generic "blue wool" from Little Barn. It's very soft and has a fabulous deep blue color with multi-colored undertones. Now, all I need to do is ply it and set the twist. I also had finished spinning the rest of the brown BFL earlier in the month, and I need to ply the last two bobbins of that as well.

Much of the time Tuesday was spent in "show and tell". In spite of the main focus being spinning, I found yet another knitting project to add to the large stack of "Project-in-Waiting" - the Lana Grossa "Panel Jacket" from the Royal Tweed booklet - Fall/Winter 2006 (it's the cover sweater). Amy is starting one and it's going to be absolutely stunning!

I knit a pair of baby booties for a friend of ours that just had a baby boy - I decided to to the booties in white fingering weight yarn and to make blue twisted cord ties for them. The best thing about baby booties is that they're VERY quick to knit up - instant gratification!

I finally completed the remaining rows of the Budding Lace 2 pattern on my Swallowtail Shawl - 14 rows total. I've started the Lily of the Valley Border 1 - I'm ready to start the 6th row of 12 for that pattern. I'll be starting my 3rd skein of yarn in this row as well. The challenging part of this pattern is the "purl 5 together" - I use the same method I did for the Maple Leaf Socks....I slip the first 4 stitches on the right needle, purl the 5th stitch, then bring each of the 4 I slipped back over the 5th stitch one at a time - it's MUCH easier than trying to do them all at once and I have less risk of "dropping" stitches since it's a more "controlled" technique.

The final thing I'm working on is a FABULOUS beaded scarf. I took a class yesterday morning at Hunt Country Yarns in Middleburg, "Knitting with Beads". I'd been waiting to take this class ever since it was first offered last October and it was well worth the wait. Classes from Bob are so much fun and you learn so much! Even "loading the yarn" with the beads wasn't as bad as I thought it would be - I used pre-strung beads, so I just had to tie the string to my yarn and "slide" the beads from the string onto the yarn.


This afternoon was spent knitting, eating, and chatting at my friend Amy's house with several other friends. Amy's friend, Terri, joined us as well, so we had quite a crowd. We had a blast! I got another row done on the Swallowtail Shawl as well as several more rows on my beaded scarf. Unfortunately, I goofed and had to rip out 16 rows...but at least it's a scarf and the rows are short - 30 stitches. I did manage to complete 10 rows in addition to the 16 rows that I had to knit twice, so I truly did make some progress.

Here's my progress on the beaded scarf - the overall picture on the left doesn't really show the varied colors in each of the glass beads. However, even though the closeup on the right is a bit out of focus, the varied colors within each bead are more easily seen.

I know, I know. I'm not making any progress on my stock pile of WIPs or UFOs. Trust me, they have not been forgotten! Sometimes you just have to start something new....or start small quick projects just to keep your knitting mojo going!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Fabulous Fiber Friends

I truly feel blessed.....through knitting and spinning I have met some of the most awesome people. I spent part of the day today knitting and chatting with a wonderful group of knitters from the Waterford Weavers Knitting Group. I was so inspired by all the wonderful things everyone was knitting....and by some fabulous new books that I'd never seen before!

Virginia hosted the get together today - and it's her fault that I HAD to order some more knitting books - LOL! I looked at two of her recent acquisitions while I was there.....and promptly ordered them when I arrived home - "The Natural Knitter" and "The Yarn Stash Workbook". Aside from tempting me with wonderful books, she was also working on a fabulous creation using the Horst Schulz method - the shawl she's making is GORGEOUS!!! Another girl (I can't remember her name) was wearing an absolutely stunning sweater jacket made from her own hand spun Romney yarn - it was beautiful! Now I feel "the need" to spin up my deep blue/teal Romney. If only there were more hours in a day!

As if this weren't enough fun and inspiration, when I got home, I checked the mailbox and inside was a fabulous surprise from my friend Kris in Michigan. She sent me a couple of patterns that I've never seen before - they're both "HeartStrings" designs. The first one is called "Silk Smoke" and is a lace Smoke Ring - the pattern is just beautiful! The second pattern is for the "Scotch Thistle Lace Stole" - this too is absolutely gorgeous! Thanks Kris!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The Parasol Socks are Done!

I finished the Parasol Socks - Kay's design! Wahoo! I used Fleece Artist merino - I was thrilled that I had a skein of the yarn recommended by the designer! My socks are fairly dark in color, so it may be hard to really see the design. If you "click" on "Parasol Socks" above, it will take you to Kay's free pattern page and you can see what the socks look like in a lighter color.

Anyhow, here's a shot from the side on the stairs as well as a "self-portrait" of the front....it looks like I got my left sock on a bit crooked.....oh, well.

Other Knitting:
I've managed to complete another repeat (6 rows) of "Budding Lace 2" section of the Swallowtail Shawl for a total of 10 repeats. I need a total of 14 repeats for that, so I'm almost there. I'm up to 147 stitches on the needles and I just attached my second skein using my favorite "join" - the "Russian Join". Then, it will be on to the next section of the shawl - "Lily of the Valley Border 1".

I also completed the first sock of the "Sweater Socks" by Blue Sky Alpaca. They are cozy bedsocks that are a bit longer than my usual socks and have a "half cable" pattern. I'm using Plymouth's Suri Merino (white) instead of the Blue Sky Alpaca Merino. They knit up VERY fast as you only cast on 40 stitches and are knitting on size 5's! This satisfies my occasional need for "instant gratification".

The weather has been absolutely gorgeous the past 2 days, so I've spent a bit of time spinning some white Blue Faced Leicester on my deck - in shorts and a tank top! Yes....it's not even the middle of March, but with the temps in the mid 70's and low 80's, it was just too tempting. Finally, after dinner, I'll be joining several of my spinning buddies for even more spinning!

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Down On the Farm....Again

Whew! Another weekend, another beautiful day.....and a fabulous time once again visiting a farm. This weekend took us to Misty Mountain Farm - the weather was perfect and the fibery goodness was fantastic! There was quite a variety of animals, so I've posted a bunch of pictures.

There was a llama, a few alpacas, a lone Lincoln sheep (it's the brown sheep that has a photo with JUST her in it!), many Finn Sheep (mostly brown and some white), many angora goats, a rooster with some chickens (only got a shot of the rooster), and the requisite herding dog, Katie. Katie and I hit it off real well - she stood up to "kiss me" as I was gazing at the herd from the fence. I think she could tell I'm a dog lover!

The llama was VERY friendly! If you got near the fence, you got sniffed, snuggled, and breathed on - it took Lisa by surprise on a number of occasions! I think the photo of Lisa and the llama captures the friendliness of this one - this llama was definitely a "lover", not a "spitter"! The sheep were pretty friendly too.....when they all went in the barn, they would produce a symphony of "baas" every time I talked! It was too funny!

Four of us made the trek to Linda's - Elizabeth and Terri met us there and Lisa rode with me. Inside the studio, we were met with an abundance of fibery goodness - lots of fiber (natural and dyed), spinning equipment, yarn, spindles, patterns, books, etc. Since was a bit chilly in the morning, and Linda had the fireplace going and greeted us with freshly brewed coffee. We relaxed a bit and shopped a bit.....it was very cozy and very enjoyable.

After Elizabeth and Terri headed out, Lisa and I decided to make a run to Middleburg for lunch at the Hidden Horse Tavern and a visit to Hunt Country Yarns. I took the "back route" from Warrenton to Middleburg - big mistake! It made me a bit car sick.....even though I was driving! The route was rural and beautiful, but very twisty, windy, and hilly - definitely the bain of anyone who gets motion sickness! Next time, I plan to stick to the interstate and main routes!

OH---- My DH is the BEST!!!! My car got all muddy from the farm trip....and he gave my car a good washing today! He's the BEST sweetheart in the world - DEFINITELY a keeper!

Other Fiber Adventures......
Earlier this week, Lisa and I met Elizabeth at Needles in the Haymarket and spent the morning knitting, chatting, and shopping. We then had lunch at "PW's Eatery And Dessert Shoppe".....we had a fabulous time! Elizabeth made me the wonderful stitch markers you see below. They're double-sided: one used to label your D (decrease) or E (even) rows and the other is used to label your I (increase) or E (even) rows. This is fabulous for sock knitting and lace knitting where you encounter alternating rows like this....and can sometimes lose track of which row you're on. She made me two of each type.

Elizabeth also brought me tons of mohair - I love mohair! I love how it looks and have made a number of cozy items from it over the years. Elizabeth (and several other people I know) can't knit with mohair - they either don't like it or have a allergy to it. So, I became the lucky recipient of a lifetime supply of mohair. The bag is STUFFED to the brim with colored mohair - is this Karma or what? The colors are definitely my colors - purples, teals, blues! It's like it was meant for me! Then, there's the gorgeous white that can be blended with about any thing else! The slubby mohair with the pastels in it will make a gorgeous Easter shawl or something nice and "Spring-like". Thanks again Elizabeth!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

SP10 Questionnaire

1. What is/are your favorite yarn/s to knit with? What fibers do you absolutely *not* like?
I love all kinds of wool - especially Merino or any other soft wool - Cormo, Blue Faced Leicester, Rambouillet, etc. And yes, I also like mohair! There's also some fabulous silk blends and other fibers.....I love them all.

2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?
All kinds of things....I have a couple of old needle cases (a bit dated....but they work) or just in a plastic tub.

3. How long have you been knitting & how did you learn? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
Hmmmmm….off and on since in High School. Probably somewhere between intermediate and advanced. I taught myself, so for a long time, I wasn't 100% sure I was doing it right....and then I heard about Elizabeth Zimmerman who said there is no right way or wrong way to knit. I love it!

4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
Yeah, but my impatience prompts me to get the books ASAP!

5. What's your favorite scent?
Mostly vanilla and cinnamon.....although I do like peach, green tea, and jasmine.

6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?
Um....sweet tooth? Me? Dark chocolate - yum!

7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?
I love all kinds of fiber arts.....although I've been doing mostly spinning, knitting, and some felting. I have done quilting, cross-stitch, and needlepoint in the past....but haven't really touched them for a while. I've done a little crochet......I'd like to get better at that - it would be real handy for making elegant trims on my knitted pieces.

8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
Pretty much everything and anything.....except country.....I'm kinda picky about what I like there.

9. What's your favorite color(s)? Any colors you just can't stand?
Purple is always a good choice for me. I also really like blues. The vibrant pinks, teals, coral, and jewel tones are great too. I love a deep “blue-red” (as opposed to the bright fire-engine red). I love all colors. The yellows and most oranges don't look good on me, but they're great as accents or accessories......so I guess there really aren't many colors that I don't like!

10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
Married with grown children and a resident Shepherd/Huskie mix.....and she LOVES the snow!

11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
Yes, yes, yes, and yes.

12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
I'm still on my sock kick.....they're quick to knit and have tons of gorgeous yarns and patterns to choose from. They're great for learning new stitch patterns. I also really like knitting bags and other items to felt.

13. What are you knitting right now?
Uh......is this a confession? I have several things I'm actively working on....and many other WIPs that are in time-out or forgotten. The "active" items are: Parasol socks, Half cable socks, Swallowtail Shawl, and Island Cotton face rags.......at least those are the ones I've been working on in the past week or so.

14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?
Definitely! They're extra special!

15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
I definitely prefer straight bamboos.....although I also like wood. I do, however, occasionally have to use circs - for felted bags done in the round and for large projects (like afghans). I do my socks on double points.

16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?
Yes....I have both.

17. How old is your oldest UFO?
Gosh…..20+ years????? (Unless you count the half-made sweater I started in High School and decided NEVER to finish…..bad color choices and WAY out of style. (It was bright yellow, light purple, purple, and deep purple – 4 strands of worsted weight yarn on large needles – UGH!!!!)

18. What is your favorite holiday?
Christmas – presents, family, and food. What a combination!

19. Is there anything that you collect?
I’m a big Betty Boop fan and have several things related to her. Really enjoy “usable” Betty Boop stuff – stationery, sticky-pads, key chains, etc. I also collect old needlework items – old buttons, needles, needle cases, wooden spools (with/without) thread/yarn, etc.

20. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
I think I get most of the knitting magazines.....I even go by the bookstore and pick up a couple of British publications as well! As I said before, with books, etc, I'm usually a bit impatient and tend to purchase them for myself....unless I've given a list to relatives for birthday/Christmas ideas.

21. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?
I keep saying I want to learn how to felt - with the fibers, rather than with a knitted item that you then felt - my goal is to make a "felted picture". I have some ideas, just not the skill to do it yet! I also still want to try "toe up" socks....I still haven't done them!

22. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?
Yes….love to knit socks. I wear a woman’s US 6 ½ to 7 shoe.

23. When is your birthday?
6/30 (the last day of SP10!)

Monday, March 05, 2007

Many Thanks to my Angel!

My "angel" for the Spin-to-Knit Secret Pal is awesome! She sent me a wonderful package! I have some gorgeous hand spun (in really wonderful colors!) to mix in with some fluffy coordinating mohair.

She also sent an absolutely adorable key chain - it's an angel whose head looks like a ball of yarn. The entire angel - head and clothes - are made from a single length of string. It's soooo cute! Be sure to click on the picture to get a closer look. It's perfect!

Now....to find a suitable project to highlight these gorgeous yarns!

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Down on the Farm

What a wonderful day! A friend of mine and I drove out to Mt. Airy Farm near Marshall, VA to visit a sheep farm. I'd heard that she'd just shorn her sheep and had a number of fleeces for sale - Cormo and CVM (California Variegated Mutant). Both of these breeds are very soft and crimpy. It's soft enough to wear next to the skin.....just like Merino. I bought a cormo fleece and a gorgeous 3-colored CVM fleece.

She has MANY more fleeces - and they're all beautiful! Here's a shot of the pile of fleeces left to chose from. If you're not interested in fleeces, she also has some fabulous colored roving that she just got back from the processor - cormo, cormo/mohair mixes, and I think some with CVM.

The farm is in a VERY scenic area - lots of gorgeous rolling hills....and the weather was fantastic! Wallys has Cormo sheep, CVM sheep, Angora goats, and a Jacob sheep. Jacob sheep are descendants of Jacob's flock (from the Old Testament) and is the oldest sheep breed. I found that tidbit of information absolutely fascinating. The black and white sheep in the photos below is the Jacob. The field with the colored sheep contains CVMs (with a white CVM as well). The field with all the white sheep and a few goats contains Cormo. The photo of the lone white sheep shows a Cormo ewe "striking a pose". The other photos show the adult angoras, baby angoras, and the draft horses.

On the way home from the farm, we stopped in Haymarket and checked out the shop, Needles in a Haymarket. It's a fabulous shop and has not only knitting/crocheting paraphernalia, but needlepoint and cross-stitch as well. They're located on the 3rd floor of the building and parking is around back. We had a wonderful time and found many "treasures" to take home!

I've had a very productive "knitting week" - I finished 3 items and am halfway done with another. And, yes, one of them was a WIP from last year! I'm a month or two ahead of myself on my "New Years Resolution" to finish at least one "old" WIP per month.

Noro Aurora scarf using the yarn from Aimee (my secret pal from SP9) and a pattern idea from my friend Kris. The metallic really shines in the sunlight giving the scarf a whole new dimension.

Haiku scarf done in a Feather and Fan pattern. Haiku is a gorgeous lace weight yarn that's 40% silk and 60% mohair from Alchemy Yarns. I love the subtle color changes of the yarn. (I have some rayon boucle in this same colorway from Blue Heron Yarns....not sure what to make with that yet....)

The "Claudia" socks using Claudia's Hand Painted Merino yarn in fingering weight and the basic ribbed sock pattern from Fiber Trends pattern, "Helen's Favorite Socks". I just love the color!

One done, one to go on my "Parasol Socks" designed by the talented Kay. I LOVE how these are knitting up! She also has a couple of other patterns as well....be sure to check it out! I'm using Fleece Artist Merino wool and this pattern really enhances the beauty of this yarn - check out the coloration and patterning of the heels.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Spinning, Weaving, and Knitting

Some weeks are just wonderful - full of interesting and enjoyable activities. This week has definitely been one of them.

Tuesday evening was spent spinning and chatting with some friends. I got to ogle some luscious dyed roving and got a line on some recently shorn fleeces......mmmmm.....lanolin.

Wednesday morning, I headed to Round Hill, VA for the Blue Ridge Spinners and Weavers Guild meeting - although I'm a member, this is only the 2nd meeting I've been able to attend. They're a fabulous group - the only criteria for being a member is that you "have to be nice" - how refreshing! I love that attitude.....plus I'm in awe of all the weaving and spinning talent they have! "Show and Tell" with this group is absolutely awesome - there were some fabulous handwoven shawls and towels as well as a lovely felted picture - complete with little sheepies.

The meeting was fantastic! There was a presentation on Nantucket Lightship Baskets by a very talented Nantucket Basket weaver, Terri Sackett. We learned a lot about the history and construction of these wonderful baskets - they are both utilitarian as well as objects of art. Here's a few pictures of the fabulous baskets Terri showed us. The detail and workmanship is phenomenal! I'm so glad I went - I learned a lot.

I ended the day attending the Purls of Distinction Knitting Guild meeting. As always, it was a very enjoyable evening of knitting and sharing. I really enjoyed looking at everyone's gorgeous creations. I get so inspired by what everyone else makes - and the gorgeous yarns that are out there! And yes, I must admit, it sometimes causes my list of projects to grow.....but that's a good thing!